Vintage Sosaku Kokeshi entitled: Chigo Zakura, (Cherry Blossom Child), by Masao Watanabe


Dimensions: 9-0”h

This doll was his most famous entitled, ‘Chigo Zakura’, (Cherry Blossom Child), which won the Prime Minister’s Award, and was presented to the Beatles in 1965, after their appearance in Japan with Sir Joseph Lockwood, Chairman of EMI Record Distributors, England.

He is famous for not only minimally turning beautiful woods and respected for his use of variegated high gloss lacquer used to add another dimension, but in this case, Watanabe uses a type of natural or colored candle wax, (Rōsoku no rōin finishing this Spring representation of the most famous and loved Cherry Blossom season. The eyes of this doll are typically looking downward in respect with just a hint of bangs peeping out of the tight head covering. The doll has Watanabe-san’s stamp and signed on the bottom.

Condition: Excellent original condition. There is one light surface scratch on the back of the body brought about by aging which does not distract from the appreciation of the doll and workmanship.

NOTE: Masao Watanabe | 1917-2007 (89) 

Born in Fukushima, Watanabe-san studied under Traditional Yajirou Master Sato, Tatsuo of Miyagi Prefecture. After relocation to America, Masao Watanabe, (Nisei male), was incarcerated Incarcerated at the Puyallup Assembly Center, Washington, and transferred to the Minidoka internment camp, Idaho during World War II. Arguably, the most popular and prolific of the 20th/c Sosaku Kokeshi artists, he began his craft in the early 1950s. A multiple award winner in Kokeshi competitions around the world, his works are permanently exhibited at the Nuremberg Toy Museum in Germany.